#PBA2015 Philippine Cup Playoffs Roundup: December 14, 2014

The 2014 PBA Philippine Cup Playoffs saw a third team barge into the semifinals after the Alaska Aces’ masterful triumph over the Meralco Bolts. Alaska now squares off against Rain or Shine for the a ticket to the Philippine Cup Finals.

"The Muscle Man" Vic Manuel came through as Alaska dominated Meralco in their knockout affair.

Game Capsules (adapted from InterAKTV):

The Alaska Aces advanced to the semifinal round of the PBA Philippine Cup after an 87-69 rout of Meralco in a knockout game in the second phase of the quarterfinals at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum. Vic Manuel had 17 points and 9 rebounds to lead the Aces, who set a date with the Rain or Shine Elasto-Painters in the Best-of-7 semis, which begins Thursday. Cyrus Baguio added 15, Dondon Hontiveros added 13, and JVee Casio 11 markers in the victory.

Alaska dominated from the beginning, outscoring Meralco, 27-12, in the opening period. The Aces utilized their size advantage to the hilt, outscoring Meralco, 38-38, in the paint, and this was despite getting outrebounded, 42-47. Alaska compensated for this by forcing 19 Bolts turnovers and by shooting 50% from the field.

Meralco got 16 points from John Wilson, while Sean Anthony and Mike Cortez each dropped 11. Erstwhile top guns Cliff Hodge, Jared Dillinger, and Gary David all struggled with a combined 15-point output. That trio of players shot just 5/20 FGs in total.

Line of the Game: Vic Manuel - 17pts, 9rebs, 8/11 FGs.

Cyrus Baguio punches this pull-up J over Reynel Hugnatan.

Mike Cortez tries to evade the defense of Ping Exciminiano, but his Bolts still fall to the Aces.

Coach Norman Black rues another chance for Meralco to advance deep in the PBA playoffs.

Images by Nuki Sabio/PBA.

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